A recent article in the New York Times by Lisa Heffernan she is asking this question exactly. “Our Push for Passion, and Why it Harms Kids” does an excellent job of stating why our push for passion can be detrimental to kids. She writes about kids growing up should not hone in on a single passion but take the time when they are young to explore many different activities so they are able to discover their passions as they move on to adulthood. Made me think as both a parent and educator about the word passion and how we need to use it at home and at school. Having one single passion, often times one that your parents or teachers have chosen for you, is limiting. Allowing for freedom and opportunity for multiple experiences is limitless, allowing for growth and discovery and our children to find their own calling.
As a parent of a 4 year old girl and 2 year old boy, I constantly reflect on how I deal with various situations with my children. From what they wear, to tantrums, to physically fighting with each other. “Did I handle that situation correctly? Did they learn from what they did wrong or am I encouraging this type of behavior to continue? Will what I did and what I said help them become a strong, but yet caring individual?”
We’ve all made our mistakes and regretted how we’ve handled certain situations as parents. And most of us are always searching for new ideas and tools on how help this little human being grow into someone who is thoughtful and kind. A recent article written in the New York Times by Adam Grant entitled Raising a Moral Child is an excellent read for parents and a great educational source for me as it reinforced a lot of the ways we parent at home, but also gave some new great tips on how to encourage kind, caring and compassionate behavior in our children.
In the article, Grant states only 1/4 to 1/2 of a child’s prosperity of acting in a kind, caring way is inherited leaving a lot of room for nurture to ensure a child will act with these values in mind now and in the future. Parents, you may think you’ve “ruined” your child for life, but this is far from true. There’s always time for nurturing change, no matter what the age of your child. For kindness and compassion lies within all of us.
Music and Homework? A Good Combination or No?
Check out this article written by my husband, a writer for That’s Shanghai and Urban Family Shanghai, about whether listening to music while you work is beneficial or not.